XPRIZE (www.xprize.org), the global leader in incentivized prize competitions, today announced its largest commitment to date – a multi-year effort to launch three additional ocean XPRIZEs by 2020, as part of the XPRIZE Ocean Initiative. To accompany the Initiative, XPRIZE is launching an Ocean Ambassador program to give the public a unique insider’s view into the XPRIZE process – from prize design to award – and to crowdsource the Grand Challenges that will be tackled with these next three ocean XPRIZEs.
As a result of human activity, the ocean is overfished, polluted, and exploited; a problem because it supports all life on Earth. As governments around the world steadily reduce research and investment geared toward addressing ocean health, XPRIZE steps in to fill the void. XPRIZE is in a unique position to galvanize a community of innovators, scientists, government officials, business leaders, philanthropists and ocean advocates in service of a bold vision – to turn our oceans away from their current state of crisis and towards real breakthroughs to ensure that the world’s oceans become healthy, valued, and understood.
“At XPRIZE, we believe great ideas can come from anywhere. Teams from around the world, from all walks of life, compete in our competitions,” said Dr. Peter H. Diamandis, chairman and CEO of XPRIZE. “We know that crowdsourcing has enormous potential, so we are inviting the public to help us hone in on the Grand Challenges facing our oceans. Whether it’s overfishing, pollution, plastics, or the myriad of other challenges, hearing directly from concerned and motivated individuals will yield new and unexpected solutions.”
The Initiative builds on the $1.4 million Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup XCHALLENGE, awarded in 2011 to a team that demonstrated an oil recovery cleanup rate nearly four times greater than the industry’s previous best recovery rate. And in September 2013, XPRIZE launched the $2 million Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPRIZE, to spur innovators to develop accurate and affordable ocean pH sensors to transform our understanding of ocean acidification.
“We realize that often the complexities of Grand Challenges require multiple, interacting solutions,“ said Wendy Schmidt, president of the Schmidt Family Foundation and co-founder of the Schmidt Ocean Institute. “By leveraging a suite of prizes all geared towards a grand ocean vision, we can truly achieve impact, and I am thrilled to partner with XPRIZE to help make this possible.”
Founded in 1995, XPRIZE, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is the leading organization solving the world’s Grand Challenges by creating and managing large-scale, high-profile, incentivized prize competitions that stimulate investment in research and development, worth far more than the prize itself. The organization motivates and inspires brilliant innovators from all disciplines to leverage their intellectual and financial capital for the benefit of humanity. XPRIZE conducts competitions in five Prize Groups: Learning, Exploration, Energy & Environment, Global Development, and Life Sciences. Active prizes include the $30 million Google Lunar XPRIZE, the $10 million Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE, and the $2.25 million Nokia Sensing XCHALLENGE. For more information, go to www.xprize.org, “like” us at http://www.facebook.com/xprize and follow us on Twitter @xprize.